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CNN BREAKING NEWS

American Bombing on Afghanistan Continues

Aired October 10, 2001 - 13:15   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
AARON BROWN, CNN ANCHOR: What we're trying to figure out is how intensive this new wave of attacks that is going on in Afghanistan is. According to one witness report, they are the heaviest since the bombing began on Sunday. Thirteen bombs have been dropped so far. That's from one witness account. We will work to verify that.

Matthew Chance is in the northern part of Afghanistan. Matthew has moved a bit closer to the front lines than yesterday and joining us now -- Matt.

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Aaron.

That's right. It's very dark and dusty and windy night here in Afghanistan. Even so, we can still bring you images from the north of Kabul. We have a nightscope videophone perched in a strategic position there so we can get those images for you north of the Afghan capital, Kabul. Remember last night we weren't able to see anything at all. So it may be some indication of the level of intensity of strikes on Kabul tonight that they're lighting up the skies over the Afghan capital.

Also reports on that mountainside overlooking Kabul that Northern Alliance positions, the opposition group here against the Taliban in northern Afghanistan, have been opening up against front-line positions of the Taliban. There's no sign, though, at this stage of that operation of theirs to press forward deeper into Afghanistan controlled by the Taliban, to move perhaps also against Kabul itself.

Many of the commanders of the Northern Alliance expressed their frustration about the U.S. airstrikes, saying that they want them to focus more on the Taliban front-line positions, not so much on the infrastructure deep inside Afghanistan, to help them achieve, to help them achieve their ultimate military objective, which is, of course, to move onto Kabul. They are looking at strikes against the mountain which lies, essentially, between their front line and the Afghan capital itself.

Nevertheless, they say they are continuing their attacks, and they've been stepping them up over the course of the days and nights of the U.S. airstrikes.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CHANCE (voice-over): Daybreak over the Shamali Plains, the alluring name for this dusty, land mine invested front line north of the Afghan capital. Coming battles could be for this.

After another night of U.S.-led air attacks to the south, the opposition Northern Alliance resumed their barrage of Taliban-forward positions. The leadership says it is in close contact with Washington to coordinate military activity. But these hardened fighters are growing impatient with the advance on Kabul and U.S. strikes on the Taliban held mountain blocking their path.

DR. ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, NORTHERN ALLIANCE FOREIGN MINISTER: Perhaps, the perception of some of our commanders are different from a military strike, and they would expect the forces and the immediate contact with them to be struck first rather than the whole strategy. For myself, it is quite understandable what's happening, and I should say once again that it is going well.

CHANCE: But the situation may be worsening for a growing number of Afghans. Already the country has as many as a million displaced. U.S.-led attacks are simply leaving more families on the road out of Kabul.

"Right now, the bombings have hit Taliban and military installations in the city," says this man. "Civilian houses have also been destroyed, and I don't know how many casualties there were."

This child tells us how hard it was to walk across the mountains from Kabul. Her mother said all of the children were crying. They trekked for hours and were all exhausted. Their hope is the latest round of fighting will in some way end this country's ongoing conflict.

After years of this, few Afghans believe they'll ever be at peace.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

As the human cost mounts, the pace gathers for control over Afghanistan and that battle for control over Afghanistan. With winter approaching, just weeks away, there is a renewed sense of urgency for matters to be resolved on both fronts -- Aaron.

BROWN: Matthew, on the subject of the weather and trying to figure out how intensive these attacks are, yesterday was quite windy, quite dusty, quite nasty, difficult for the pilots to see their targets. Today, as we look at you, it looks a little bit better.

CHANCE: Because we're in very sheltered location here, because of this live camera that we've put up purposely because there's a windstorm and sandstorm going on in our normal location.

Certainly from the position of the videophone nightscope, it is going to be very windy out there, very dusty, very thick kind of dust hanging over that whole Shamali Plain, which overlooks the front lines between the two sides -- Aaron.

BROWN: Well, at least we got you out of the wind. Thank you, Matthew, Matthew Chance, in the northern part of Afghanistan. TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com


 
 
 
 


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